Recent polling shows leads for Hickenlooper, Biden in Colorado as voters cast ballots

New Keating-OnSight-Melanson (KOM) Colorado Poll released Thursday
Recent polling shows leads for Hickenlooper, Biden in Colorado as voters cast ballots
Posted at 9:09 AM, Oct 16, 2020

DENVER – A new Colorado poll released Thursday shows double-digit leads for Democrats John Hickenlooper and Joe Biden in their respective races as voters return their ballots in what officials on Thursday called historic numbers for the 2020 General Election.

The Keating-OnSight-Melanson (KOM) Colorado Poll released Thursday is the fourth in a week to show similar leads for the two Democrats over their respective Republican opponents, Sen. Cory Gardner and President Donald Trump, in Colorado.

The polling in Colorado comes as ballots arrive in mailboxes across the state after county clerks started mailing them last Friday. Secretary of State Jena Griswold said more than 300,000 ballots had already been returned as of Thursday morning – 24 times the number returned over the same time period in 2016.

The KOM Colorado Poll comes from a Democratic firm that has a B/C rating from FiveThirtyEight. The poll released Thursday surveyed 519 likely Colorado voters in an online survey with a ±4.3% margin of error. The survey was weighted to the party registration split in Colorado and surveyed people from across the state. Click here for the crosstabs.

The poll found Biden leading Trump 54%-39%, with 3% of respondents saying they were voting for another candidate and 4% saying they were undecided.

In the U.S. Senate race, Hickenlooper led Gardner 51%-41% among those surveyed, with 7% undecided.

The polling in the Senate race has narrowed slightly since the same firm polled what was at the time a theoretical Hickenlooper-Gardner matchup in early May 2020 and October 2019. In May, the poll found 54% of respondents leaning toward a vote for Hickenlooper, compared to 36% leaning toward Gardner. Last October, Hickenlooper led the theoretical matchup 53%-42%.

Biden performed well in the poll among unaffiliated men (56% to Trump’s 32%) and unaffiliated women (60% to Trump’s 26%), and he led Trump 58%-35% in Broomfield, Jefferson, Arapahoe and Douglas counties in the poll. In Larimer, Weld, Pueblo and El Paso counties, Trump held a 46%-45% lead in the poll, and Trump held a 48%-44% in rural Colorado.

Pollster Chris Keating, of Keating Research, based in Telluride, said those number spell bad news for Trump in Colorado this election.

“He’s overwhelmingly disliked by Hispanic and younger voters — and he’s doing worse with voters over age 50 than he did four years ago. He’s not popular with women overall, suburban women in particular, or suburban voters in general. Add all that up, and Trump is headed for a classic yard-sale on election day,” Keating said in a statement.

The poll released Thursday found respondents focused on the COVID-19 pandemic and the economy as their main concerns that the president and new Congress will need to address come January. Twenty-nine percent of respondents said COVID-19 and a vaccine was the “number one issue the newly elected President and Congress should act on next year,” followed by 23% who said the economy, jobs and a stimulus package should be the top priority. Health care came in third, with 8% of respondents saying that should be the top focus.

The KOM Colorado Poll also asked questions about the president’s and governor’s handling of the coronavirus response and about the U.S. Supreme Court.

Disapproval over the president’s handling of the COVID-19 response increased by two points – from 59% to 61% -- since May, while approval jumped one point, from 34% to 35%. For Gov. Jared Polis, his approval on the handling of the COVID-19 response fell from 71% in May to 62% in October, while disapproval rose from 19% to 27% over the same time period.

Sixty percent of respondents said they believe a new Supreme Court justice should be nominated by the winner of the presidential election, compared to 40% who said Trump should have nominated one for Senate confirmation prior to the election, as he has.

Forty-two percent of respondents said they believe the Supreme Court should overturn the Affordable Care Act when it hears the challenge next month, compared to 58% who said it should not be overturned.

Seventy percent of respondents said that Roe v. Wade should not be overturned, and 75% said that same-sex marriage should remain the law of the land after two justices questioned the court’s 2015 decision in a dissent in recent weeks.

A Civiqs online Colorado poll – which also has a B/C FiveThirtyEight rating – paid for Democratic-leaning outlet Daily Kos released Thursday, which did an online poll of 1,013 likely voters between Oct. 11-14 with a ±3.6 margin of error, found Hickenlooper leading Gardner 53%-42% and Biden leading Trump 54%-42%.

Morning Consult, which also does online polls and has a B/C rating from FiveThirtyEight, released a poll on Tuesday showing Biden with a 54%-40% lead over Trump in Colorado out of 837 likely voters surveyed Oct. 2-11, with a ±3.4% margin of error. The same poll found Hickenlooper leading Gardner 50%-40%.

And a SurveyUSA poll sponsored by 9News and Colorado Politics released Oct. 8, which talked to 1,021 likely voters with a credibility interval of ±3.9%, found Biden leading Trump 50%-40% and Hickenlooper leading Gardner 48%-39%.

For more information on Colorado’s 2020 General Election and voter resources and guides, click here.